Limerick councillors in reverse gear on proposed Adare road scheme

Cllr Stephen Keary

by Alan Jacques

[email protected]

Cllr Stephen Keary
Cllr Stephen Keary

PROPOSED N21 Adare Western Approach Improvement Scheme works, due to start at the end of the year, do not have the support of local area councillors.

Representatives from the Council’s Adare-Rathkeale district hit out at planners this week for not addressing issues they had raised about the proposed €1 million upgrade, which includes pavement rehabilitation, drainage and footpath works in Adare.

The scheme, which will extend from the R519 Ballingarry Road to the L1422 Blackabbey Road over a distance about 1.3km on the N21, was strongly criticised by councillors at the monthly area meeting.

Following a briefing this Wednesday morning from the Mid West National Road Design Office, Fine Gael councillor Stephen Keary accused planners of paying “lip service” and not addressing any of the issues raised at two previous briefings.

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Cllr Keary reiterated comments he made at previous meetings where he called for tourists to be curtailed at pedestrian crossings in Adare with a stop/start system rather than being allowed to “cross the street haphazardly”.

“Unfortunately, I cannot support this proposal. You’d want to put a proper plan in place and do it with all necessary pieces in place. You’ve made no effort to address the problems. Ye are just sitting here like a herd of donkeys,” he said.

Sinn Fein councillor Ciara McMahon also told planners that she would not be supporting the proposed plans as she felt she had not heard “anything different”.

Meanwhile, Fianna Fail councillor Kevin Sheahan produced a petition signed by 200 people calling for a footpath on the Blackabbey Road. He said he was all for the upgrade of the main access road to Adare, but said it was not a priority at this juncture.

“My priority is to represent the people who voted for me and elected me. Two hundred people who use the Blackabbey Road several times every day have asked for a footpath. We need to spend the money where it is desperately needed in the interest of road safety,” he told the council executive.

“I dread the day when some young boy with a hurley and a helmet in his hands ends up on the bonnet of a car. I hope that day never happens but I cannot support these works until a footpath is first provided for these people.”

Independent councillor Emmett O’Brien predicted that the Adare Western Approach Improvement Scheme works would cause “unnecessary traffic chaos”.